Are You Kidding Me?

I want to quote an excerpt from a book I'm currently reviewing, and then I have a couple of comments to make (which will probably give you a pretty good idea what kind of review this book is getting).

Everything fell quickly into place. . .It was a good example (retrospectively, of course) of how easily things come together when one is moving in the direction of God's will.  It has taken many years to truly learn that when everything seems difficult and feels as though you are swimming upstream, it is usually because you are not following the direction of God's will.  When you are doing God's will, everything seems to happen without much effort or many obstacles. - Mary C. Neal, To Heaven and Back

I have one very pertinent question for Ms. Neal -- have you ever read the Bible?  I'm sorry, but this lady has no idea what she's talking about.  And I'm not saying that as destructive criticism towards her, but rather as a warning.  A warning?  Why?  Because as I was reading this, before her statement had fully sunk in, thoughts from the devil were surfacing in my tired, little brain.  You see, Dana?  That's why making a living as a writer has been so hard.  All this time you've been going against God's will.  You've been doing your own thing, and it's gotten you nowhere.

Thankfully, I caught the thoughts before they had a chance to sink in.  Those were dangerous thoughts, and they were perpetuated by a single false paragraph.  How many Christians are wandering around today, defeated and discouraged because the path they're on is filled with obstacles and because of messages like the one above, they've concluded that it's because they're not in God's will and they feel they've wasted precious years on the wrong track?

It's imperative that we realize that God will guide and direct us to His will, and sometimes He accomplishes that by closing doors.  That is not to say, however, that every closed door or obstacle we encounter is God re-directing our paths.  Look in the Bible.  Read the story of Job or Paul.  Were they living right?  Yes.  Were they doing the Lord's will?  Without a doubt.  So, according to Ms. Neal, their lives were full of everything seems to happen without much effort or many obstacles.  Right?  Absolutely not!  Their lives were full of troubles, heartache and discouragement.  Satan was fighting against them because he was offended by their faithfulness to God.

Allow me to use my own situation as an example.  If my writing career was against God's will, and my actions were outside His will, do you think Satan would try to point that out?  Of course not!  He wants me outside of God's will.  He desires for me to do my own thing.  He wouldn't point out my mistake in hopes that I'd get right.  That's utter nonsense!  Building a career in writing has been difficult. . .very difficult.  But it's because of the obstacles that I know I'm on the right track.  If everything was smooth sailing, I'd be very concerned.  After all, Satan has no reason to bother those who are already off track.

I apologize if I seem a little over-adamant about this, but I'm so tired of "feel good" theology.  I'm sick of reading books by best-selling authors that are filling people's hearts and minds with lies.  Being a Christian is hard enough without being constantly bombarded by false information.  May I urge you to please be on guard?  Take everything you hear and/or read, and compare it with God's Word.  If it doesn't line up, toss it.  Then, go a step further and warn others.  We need to look out for one another.

Now, I have some more reading to do.  Pray for me that I'll make it through this book without slinging it across the room.